With so much hyper-specific advice out there on different styles of training and areas of fitness, it's easy to lose sight of the big picture. Everyone has different fitness goals, ranging from generally trying to stay active to viewing fitness as a lifestyle. We talked to three experienced trainers on what some of the most important fitness goals should be for just about anybody. These goals will keep you grounded and force you to look at the big picture in your approach to incorporating physical activity within your life.
1. Be In It For the Long Run
Right now, you might be hitting the gym pretty hard, getting yourself into the best shape of your life. Of course, it won’t always be that way, so just realize that fitness should be a part of your life for decades to come. A number of athletes refuse to ease off the gas pedal, going all out and then quitting exercise cold turkey. Obviously, there are others who never take up healthy exercise habits in the first place. “I have seen too many extremely successful people pass away in their early 50s because they never took care of themselves,” says trainer Mike Duffy, who owns his own personal training company in New Jersey. “They end up leaving their beautiful children, wonderful wives and the enjoyment of their financial success because nutrition and fitness were never incorporated into their lifestyles.” Realize that fitness should be a lifetime commitment with ever-changing goals and expectations, and it should help you live a longer, healthier life.
2. Get onto a Healthy Nutrition Plan
“Nutrition goals are usually pretty crucial [in order] to achieve success,” says Steve Ettinger, a fitness expert, speaker and certified strength and conditioning specialist. Picking out an effective nutrition plan depends on what your fitness/health goals are, but the general idea of getting more fruits and vegetables in your diet, along with plenty of protein and complex carbohydrates is something most people will agree on. Working out how much to consume of each will depend on your specific fitness goals. Do your best to limit junk food and other sources of empty calories.